All For HIM Marketing Solutions Inc.

Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Resolution Time

I've never much been a fan of New Year's Resolutions.  Why?  Because, I figure, that if someone has to wait until Jan 1 to begin their new thing, then they aren't that serious about it.  Most NYRs are based on something that people have "had enough of" something or someone realizing that time is passing and they need to make a change.  For most people (myself included) a drastic change in mindset has to take place.  The simple change of the clock striking midnight on a certain day isn't enough.  If it were, most NYRs would last past January.  Resolutions that do last or succeed are normally started by more than the singing of that weird new year's eve song that everyone recognizes the tune of but nobody knows the words to (wait, here it is... "old acquaintance be forgotten, la la la, la la, la laaa).  For most people something out of the ordinary takes place or something causes them to wake up and get serious.

With that said, I have somewhat of a NYR that I kicked off this week.  I know I'll make it.  How do I know?  Because I started on the 28th of December.  That's right.  I had been realizing that things didn't quite fit the way they used to fit but, when my wife got me on the scale on the morning of Dec. 28th.  I weighed 213 pounds.  I know a lot of guys weigh 213, but, I'm only 5feet 7inches tall.  I wanted to puke.  I was so hacked off at myself for this that I decided a change needed to happen and it needed to happen right then.  I already exercise quite extensively but have a passion for eating.  That's right, right across the street from where I work out is a Taco Bell and I know I can pick up a #9 with a large sweet tea for $4.98 with tax included.  I love to exercise, but when it comes to food, I have the willpower of a crack addict.  Normally I only eat under certain conditions, like when I'm depresses, or happy, or bored, or working, or early in the mornings, or late at night.  See where I'm going?  At first, I thought that a lobotomy might be my best option.

Here's the deal... I need to weigh about 175 lbs.  So, how do I plan to do it?  A little at a time.  I'm figuring on an average of 2 lbs lost each week through May 10th, 2009.  Five months, I can do that.  I'll leave a quick update each Monday for those of you wondering if I can do it or not.  That will help me be accountable if I have to post my progress for all to see (well all 3 of you who read my blog that is).  I've thought about picking up a supplement for a head start.  I'm thinking that the quicker I see some results, the less likely I am to get discouraged.  I'd like some opinions on that.

Bottom line is this.  If you truly are tired of smoking, eating too much, not spending enough time with your family, not exercising, not giving 100% at your job, not spending enough time with God, whatever your NYR will be... If you really are serious, why wait 2 more days.  Wake Up! Start right now!!!


Wednesday, December 24, 2008


Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer is probably the most popular children's Christmas carol ever.  But, have you ever truly checked out the story this song tells?  

So, here's this outcast sleigh puller.  He's born with some sort of weird thing going on with the electric pulses that move through his nervous system.  It seems they back up extra current to his nose causing it to light up "like a light bulb".  I had an uncle with a red bulbous nose but that was from all the booze.  Rudolph's has a more natural cause.  Well, anyway, all Rudolph's classmates think he's a real weirdo because he's not equipped like the other typical folks around his hood.  The other hoofed helicopters laugh at him and call him names (like Pinocchio).  They wouldn't even let him play Monopoly with them.

All this rejection gets ole Rudy down and he feels like some sort of failure due to all of the rejection when, right at his lowest point, who else but Santa himself asks Rudy to lead the way through a fog storm that otherwise would have made a disaster of the big guys Christmas Eve travel arrangements.  His unique abnormality impacted the world in an awesome way that night.  

You see, Rudolph was different for sure, but, he was made perfectly different for the purpose that God had in store for him.  In some way, all of us have felt like a Rudolph did at the beginning of the song at one time or another.  Everyone has had something they've tried to hide because it made them feel inadequate, or they were afraid of being rejected.  I know for me, I would always catch a bunch of slack from my teachers for "over-analyzing" things.  I was the kid that when given the written math problem about two trains leaving the station and what time each would arrive, would drive the teacher nuts at how more information was needed because one loaded heavier might take longer to get to top speed and a less trained driver might not make as quick of time.  My teachers hated me.  I wouldn't try to be a pain, but, couldn't stand not having all the information or knowing all variances weren't looked into completely.  Now, I've realized that God put that into me so that I can find things that others sometimes can't.  It helps when I'm consulting a client about what advertising options are best for them, or when I'm showing someone how scripture written thousands of years ago can pertain to their life today.

What is it about you that has made you feel like a Rudolph?  What is unique about you that others have thought was strange?  Listen to the song now and think of how can you use your shiny nose for a world changing purpose that God has implanted in your heart?  When you find that, you'll begin to feel like the Rudolph at the end of the song rather than the one at the beginning.  I know I did.


Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Mary, Did You Know?

When I hear the song, Mary, did you know, I can't help but just imagine the storm of feelings that must have rushed through Mary, the young teen aged mother's heart.  The song asks Mary if she knew things about the baby she'd just given birth to.  The thing is, most of the questions this song asks, she did know.

As I type this, my four year old, Ruthie, is sitting on my lap and laying her head on me.  I love it when my girls want do take time out of busy play to stop and cuddle their daddy.  Times like this make me feel like the most awesome, special, and chosen, person in the world.  My children have a special way of making me feel loved, and I'm so full of love for them that, at times, I feel like I could burst with this love.  If you're a parent, I'm sure you've had those times when you want to do nothing but sit and admire your children.  Maybe watching them sleep, or watching as they play alone and pretend to make conversation with their toys.

Now, can you imagine those same times mentioned in the previous paragraph, if you knew your child was the supernatural incarnation of God?  Mary knew this.  She knew that Jesus was destined to be the Savior of mankind.  She didn't need to ask if he wanted to be a fireman when He grew up.  She knew He created firemen.  With all the feelings I have when I'm holding one of my children, I can't imagine the feelings I might have if I was entrusted with the upbringing of Gods chosen Messiah.  I sometimes am nervous at my responsibility as a parent, but, she was responsible for the the care of God in the flesh.

Listen to the song now, and this time, meditate on your experiences with your own kids and what this young woman must have experienced that night in a cold barn.


Monday, December 22, 2008

The Little Drummer Boy

The Little Drummer Boy is a Christmas caroling classic.  Most people can rattle off a few lines, or at least recognize the repetitive phrase, "pa rum pa pum pum".  I was riding in the car with my family on the way to one of those seasonal visits to grandma's house when this popular winter hit began to play on the radio.  My whole family was singing along joyously when my wife looked over and began to giggle at the tears welling up in my eyes.  Most of you have figured out by now that I'm a big wuss, bu, before you plan your wisecracks, I'd like you to consider the story this song tells.

Here it is.  The day of prophesy has come, and this little boy becomes saddened as he watches people giving precious, valuable gifts to the very Child of God.  This kid is poor and has nothing he feels fit to give Jesus.  So, in a stretch of desperation, he asks Mary if he may at least play his drum for her baby and receives a nod of permission from the new mother.  Nervously, the young drummer begins to tap the drum and keep rhythm with the sounds of the animals who'd gathered around.  Next thing you know, Jesus, the baby he came to worship, the savior of mankind, looked his way and smiled in approval of this young man and his desire to give all of himself to his King.  You can feel the excitement that must have rushed though his entire body.  He must have at that moment been numb with excitement and and the urge to shout with joy to The Lord.  Even that which had seemed unworthy and meaningless to the boy a few minutes ago, was pleasing to Jesus because of the whole hearted God pleasing offering it was meant to be.

This should be the story of our lives.  You think you don't have enough to give?  You think you don't have what it takes?  You DO!  You have something.  Maybe you have an hour you can dedicate to serving him through your local church.  Maybe you have experiences and a compassion for kids and teens that you could use to introduce them to their savior.  Maybe you could dedicate the songs you sing in the shower or at the red light to Him.  No matter how tone deaf or how little rhythm you have (the boy in the song had to turn to animal sounds for rhythm help), I promise that a song of praise offered to Christ will be pleasing to HIM.

So, do me (and yourself) a favor, and listen to the song again now.  While you do though, think of the things you'll do today.  Find ways you can offer everything today as an act of worship to God who deserves ALL of our time and talents.


Thursday, December 18, 2008

Hitler Birthday Cake

I came across this story last night and it made me absolutely sick.  It seems some backwards guy in New Jersey decided to name his kid Adolf Hitler.  What?!!!  You heard me.  To top it off, his two daughters have the words "aryan nation" and "hinler".  What losers.

These people got all hacked because the Shop Rite supermarket refused to put their son's full name on a cake.  According to the supermarket, they've been declining this families similar requests for the past few years.  Including, a request to put a swastika on a cake.  I heard the mom on a television interview say how it hurt their feelings.  Poor souls.  I wonder if they think of all the people offended and with hurt feelings that a racist loser would use their kid as a billboard for a hate organization.  

Of course Wal-Mart was more than willing to make the cake, but hey, they won't sell CD's with a parental advisory label.  Give them some credit.  They do have some standards.

Of course the real story is what these names will do to the poor kids who have to wear them.  As an employer, I wouldn't hire someone who's name might offend my customers.  Teachers, I'm sure will treat these kids differently than the rest of their class.  Wrong or right, they will.  I'm sure also that over the course of their upbringing there will be countless minorities whom after being offended or turned off by the names this family has chosen, will treat these kids differently (once again, wrong or right, they will). Those things will only fuel the hate these kids are being taught by their parents.  

We've just elected our first black president for crying out loud!  Get over it!  Welcome to 2008!  Just when it seems we've pulled out of the dark ages of our country.  There's some loser ready to make an attempt to pull us back in.

I know this isn't my normal type of topic but this really hacked me off.  Read the story and share your thoughts.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008


I'm currently in the middle of a small project for my wife.  Just making some new cabinet doors for our entertainment center.  Sounds simple enough right?  Well it's actually not too bad.  I was thinking though while I was working on them of how it's the little details that I miss and cause me to back up and re-visit three steps I'd already completed.  This would probably not be a problem for someone who works with wood quite often.  They would naturally understand the way the project would go and thus save time and the wasted gas from multiple trips to the hardware store.  By the time I finish I probably will have saved some money, but to the tune of hours of wasted time (better spent making money at what I'm good at) and days of stress.  Not to mention mediocre craftsmanship on the final product.

I make light of this situation, however, countless business owners every day begin projects or take on tasks that are not their best use of time and talent.  As a business owner or manager, you must the following things when deciding whether to take on a task yourself or to pay someone.

  • What makes my company profit and does this fall in line?
  • How much profit would I realize for each hour I spend doing the things that make my company money?
  • How many hours do I anticipate spending on this project?  (multiply this one by 2.5 if it's not something you regularly do, because it will ALWAYS take 2.5 times as long as anticipated)
  • Is quality an issue with this product? (someone who focuses all their time on this task will likely produce a better quality finished product)
  • Will faster finish time + money made and time saved by you while doing something else + results of a better quality product + stress and workload on yourself and staff = more value than the initial cost of hiring out the task.
For instance, many companies handle their own advertising.  Most business owners however, are better at their trade or profession than they are at advertising.  So, does it make more sense for an orthodontist to...
  1. take time to meet with numerous representatives from many types of advertising media / take time to write ads / budget which advertising option gets how much of total ad budget / keep continual contact with ad reps to stay up to date on program & pricing changes 
  2. contract an advertising agent to learn his business goals and advertising budget then let the pro do the rest. 
Chances are that in option two, the advertising agent will get the orthodontists practice seen in more places for the same budget as well as create better ads to bring in not only more business but the type of business that matches his client's goals.  Ultimately making the orthodontist much more profit than the price of hiring the agent.

What things are you holding on to that you should "hire out"


Tuesday, December 16, 2008

What Messes Me Up?

I was reading yesterday's blog from my friend Cari Kelly when I began to weep (like a schoolgirl after breaking up with her first boyfriend) while watching the video attached to her post.  Those of you who know me, know that I can't keep from bawling at the thought of a kid in need or in pain.  Sorry.  I know that's not tough, or may lack in composure, or whatever you want to call it, but that's something God seems to use to mess me up quite often.

Why is it that we worry about trivial things like getting the latest generation of iPhone or Blackberry?  Or stress over corporate layoffs and downsizing in a country with unemployment services?  Why is it common for people drive a $40,000 car while complaing about being too "broke" to financially aide the single mom to get her kids into the local sports league.

We are a horribly petty society.  We call these things "issues" when there are kids in the world (or in our own communities), who won't have a drink of clean water today.  Kids who will not eat a meal over Christmas break because they won't get their school meal.  Even worse, there are kids all over the world (and probably your street) who won't have anyone hold them and tell them they're loved today.

What can I do?  God is messing me up about this for a reason.  It burns a fire through me and I won't quit doing things about it until God decides to mess me up about something else some day.  But, for now, this is consuming me.

So tell me...
  • What really messes you up?  Causes uncontrollable feelings to rage in you?
  • What do you plan to do about it?

Monday, December 15, 2008

Who Are You Attracting/Excluding

I always really get into the worship music at my church, but, yesterday I was caught up in an uncontrollable rejoice during this time.  A guest visit by the University of Central Oklahoma's Ebony Gospel Choir rocked my world, and my church.

It was great to see this predominantly white group of people crying out to God to the worship styling of a different culture.  As I looked around I saw more minorities in the crowd than usually attend this church.  My wife, noticing the same thing, commented on how nice it was to have a more diverse crowd this weekend.  We also discussed how though many of the visitors had church homes and were here to support friends or family who were performing, surely there were some visitors with no church home at all.  How can we attract those mentioned with no church homes for future visits and to join our church family.  It's strange how we can grow up in the same town, play on the same teams, go to the same schools, and worship the same God and exclude other races and cultures while we do it.

This experience made me really have to start thinking.  Why is it that there are so few minorities in my church?  I seriously doubt that someone decided to exclude minorities in our church.  As I pondered this, I was reminded of a phenomenon described by John C. Maxwell in his book The 21 Irrefutable Laws of Leadership.  The Law of Magnetism as described in this book states that "like attracts like" or that people attract others like themselves.  Our church is great at reaching 20-40 year old white couples with young children.  This is true primarily because that's the original group that started the church.  They attracted others like them, and so begins the snowball effect.

The Law of Magnetism is evident all around us in society today and mostly in our churches.
Chances are that whatever organization you're leading (it's not just churches), there are people being missed by your business or ministry.

So, if this just happens naturally by the Law of Magnetism, how do we combat it?  We use this very same phenomenon to our advantage.  Maybe for you it's as simple as including a more diverse variety of music on the play list coming over the speakers of your business.  For some of you it may be offering different styles or slogans to the apparel you sell.  For our church, maybe it's adding a little more "soul" to our worship experience or more visits from that UCO Ebony Gospel Choir.

The point is that if the mission of your organization is to reach as many people as possible, you've got to ask what things you can do to become more "like" the people you've been missing. 


Friday, December 12, 2008

Break Your Children

I plan to break my children this week.

Here's what I mean.  When I was young, my mother would make some HUGE meals.  Not for us.  She was a single mom with 4 kids to raise.  She couldn't afford to feed us steak and potato meals all the time.  However, any time a windfall of money (equal to an hour of overtime pay) would come her way, she'd splurge on a HUGE meal.  This meal wasn't for our family though.

My mom would cook this meal with meat, potatoes, veggies, bread, and desert.  The cool thing is what we would do with that meal.  After it was finished, it would be served up on paper plates wrapped in foil to make as many meals as possible, then, we would drive around the city and find someone who seemed in need of a meal who we could give it to.  As I grew older I would sometimes get out and give the meals to people, but my fondest memory is of sitting in the car and watching through the window as my mother would approach a stranger with what could possibly have been their first warm meal in days.  I was so proud of my mom.  Even though there were times I'm sure she wondered how she would provide for her kids, she found ways to give to so many others. 

When times came that I was unable to wear the same shoes as the other kids, or wear the name brand jeans, or get a video game system (the original Nintendo), I understood how fortunate I was rather than focusing on what we lacked.  

She "broke" me.  Whenever I see someone in need, my heart breaks all over again.  She created kids who love to give.  Kids who love to help others.  Kids who are grateful for everything they have.  She created kids whose greatest desire is to help others.  I now will begin to "break" my kids and pray that they will gain some of those same attributes from the experience.

Thanks Mom.  Thanks for "breaking" me.  You're my hero and I love you.


Thursday, December 11, 2008

A Site With A Beat

Does your website have music on it?  If so, please pay attention.  

We've all clicked on a link to a site and music began to blare through our computer's speakers.  What was your reaction?  Chances are, it was the same as mine usually is.  After flinching from the startling surprise, I mute the music as fast as I can, then look around to see who else around me I disrupted.  Some times I don't mind the music, but for the majority of sites with a beat, it's just a nuisance.  

The first thing you should be sure of when designing your site is that everything there serves some sort of purpose.  What purpose does your music serve?  If your site is for your band, music store, or some other thing like that, then the music probably needs to be there so that your potential customers can get a small taste of what you're selling.  If your site is a MySpace or FaceBook page, that page is there to tell about you and what you like, so, that shows surfers what music you like.

I would encourage anyone with a website to consider these things about their site.
  • What type of site is it?  This is important whether a personal site, business site, non-profit organization, church, or whatever it may be.  
  • What are the site's goals?  Is the goal just to tell about you?  Sell products?  Encourage click-through traffic?  Prompt a visit from potential customers or clients?  
  • Who do you want to visit your site?  Are your visitors going to be people seeking a vacation?  A future bride looking for a wedding venue?  Husband searching for an anniversary gift?  The single mom who visited your church last week and is looking to learn more?  Friends & family keeping up on you?  
  • Will ALL of the people visiting your site like the same music as you?
  • Will the majority of your sites visitors turn down the music volume or delete it?  If so it's probably because they're inconvenienced or annoyed by it.
  • If your last answer was yes, will your site still reach it's goals?  Chances are, if your site is a tool that generates business, a yes answer to the previous question could effect your bottom line and therefore hinder your sites ability to accomplish it's goals.  
If your site doesn't reach it's goals... you don't need the site.


Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Creative Consequences

When it comes to kids and discipline, many of us find ourselves resorting to the trusty ol' time out, spanking, or taking away of privileges.  Next time your kid is banned from video games or their bicycle for a week, ask them afterward to explain in detail why that privilege was taken away in the first place.  If the offense called for a spanking, wait an hour or two after the punishment and ask that same question.  Rarely will the kid completely recall all the reasons for that punishment.  Sometimes they will put some of the pieces together.  Most of the time, to the parent's frustration, the kid will miss most of "the point".  

I know, I know.  That's frustrating, but, what are parents to do?  Well, we constantly encourage our children to "stop and think" before acting.  Why don't we do the same?  Be  Creative.  Find a consequence that matches the offense directly.  That way your kid CAN'T forget.  

Here's some Ideas.

Offense:  Teenager that slams his bedroom door.  
Consequence:  Take his bedroom door away.  This can be taken off easily in about 30 seconds. Your teenager loses the privilege of that added privacy.  They can trek to the bathroom to change clothes and stuff.  It won't kill them, but they'll think about not slamming that door next time.

Offense:  Daughter keeps forgetting to flush the toilet after using it.
Consequence:  For 2 days, nobody in your family is allowed to flush after a trip to the restroom.  Instead, your daughter must enter after each deposit to flush everyone elses stuff.  Gross huh.  But hey, that's what she expects mom to do.  I bet she flushes from now on.

Offense:  Kids are running through the house like its home of track and field competition.
Consequence:  They must be on their knees when moving through the house for one day.  They'll think this one's fun at first,  but trust me.  By the end of a full day of this, they'll be happy to walk around tomorrow. 

O.K.  I helped you get started but now it's up to you.  Stop and take some time before just defaulting to the same ol' consequence that didn't work last time.  Then, go.  Be creative.  

Be sure to comment and share your ideas.


Tuesday, December 9, 2008

The Hookup

We've all seen them. We've all used them. I'm talking about those little cards or keychain tags that businesses punch a hole in when we make a purchase. I have one that I keep in my car's console for the coffee shop across town. Many times I've made that drive because I was only x number of cups away from a free latte, even though I passed 4 other coffee shops with free wifi on the way there. Then there's the oil change place around the corner that gets me excited about a 3,000 mile oil change. I no longer push it to 5 or 6 thousand miles because I know that would delay the time between now and my free oil change that they are "giving" me.

Whether you're leading a ministry, a retail business, or service business, you should be giving your customers or attenders a reason not only to return to you rather than your competition but to return sooner rather than later. Maybe, "since you've purchased this item, you receive $10 off a second for a friend or family member if you order this month".

One more note. The oil change place I mentioned, they have this down to an art. Sometimes, when the manager is the one checking me out after my service, he'll give my keychain tag an extra hole punch... and make sure to tell me he's doing it (in a nonchalant way). Even though I'm sure that nearly every repeat customer receives this same advantage, I can't help but to feel some what special or like a bit of an insider. The manager likes me so much he's giving me "the hookup".

Find a reason for people to return often. Then take the next step and give them "the hookup".


Monday, December 8, 2008

Integrity or Technicality

In tough economic times, it's challenging but evermore important that business leaders don't sacrifice integrity on the alter of business success. One way many leaders do this is by using technicalities to justify their actions. I know many of you have seen this in the past and may be witness to it now. Here's one instance I recently experienced.

I have a long time friend who has always displayed integrity and honesty in his leadership. These are two things many people could recognize as his core values without having to ask him. The friend of mine is in a high level leadership position for a well known company that has been disrupted by recent economic struggles. A short time ago, the company he works for witnessed the unfortunate layoffs of over 200 people across the country in one day. While speaking to his nervous team who had just found out the news, he was asked the question, "How will the layoffs effect the sales staff". His answer was that no sales reps would be layed off. I emphasise the term layed off because this was where the technicality took place. One week later, 3 sales reps from that team were relieved of their employment. When talking to my friend about the situation he stated that the sales reps lost their jobs due to performance and were fired... not layed off. I would argue though that they may have been chosen due to their sales performance, however I don't believe those people would have been fired (at least not without notice or at this time) had it not been for downsizing of the company.

Technically, he told the truth. They were chosen to be fired due to performance. Not layed off. However, when looking at this through a lens of integrity, it's easy to see the corporate spin.

We all are suspect to this condition. When times are tough, it's often easy to spin things so that they are technically correct even though we know in our hearts that an incorrect message is being received. Maybe you've told the bank you "technically" make a certain salary so that you could get that loan. Or, maybe you told your insurance you "technically" don't smoke to same on your monthly premium. Or, maybe you told a prospective employer that you "technically" had a certain title in a previous job, even though the title didn't match you experience.

Bottom line is. If you have to justify your integrity with technicalities, you might consider re-communicating your message.

What's your take?


Friday, December 5, 2008

Super Fellon

My wife (Pepper) and I both do business on the internet. I in the area of marketing (custom labeled water bottles, search engine marketing, website marketing), she sells all sorts of stuff. Pepper is a genius at finding niche places and specialty sites to market what she's selling. One thing she sells a ton of is motorcycle parts. That's right. My wife has the best deals on the motor cycle parts you need.

On my way out the door to get a haircut yesterday, she asked if I would stop by the post office and get 3 large flat rate shipping boxes (you get them, fill them, and pay when you ship them) to bring home to her. She told me right where they were and what they looked like. About 15 minutes later, I strolled into the post office, found the rack with boxes, grabbed 3 of the largest ones, and strolled back to my car to head to my haircut. All while enjoying a phone conversation with a good friend of mine.

After the haircut, I went straight home to bring my wife her boxes (I'm proud. I remembered them). My wife looked at them and said "Wrong boxes. That's not them." I then looked at them again to see the price clearly marked $3.49 on each of them. That's right. I stole $10.47 worth of merchandise from the US Postal Service. I'm pretty sure that's some sort of federal offense. Needless to say, I'll be making a trip to the post office today so that I can do the "walk of shame" and return my stolen goods.

Moral of the story. - Pay complete attention to your wife's instructions. She may save you some time in prison.


Thursday, December 4, 2008

OU/Texas... Be Honest

If you're a sports fan you've no doubt been bombarded with controversy talk for the last few weeks.  You know, the whole OU, Texas, Big12, BCS thing.  Here's my take and how I would vote.  If I had a vote.
I'll preface by saying that I definitely am an OU football fan.  However, unlike most who dawn the crimson and cream apparel on Saturdays, I can set my cheering agenda aside and admit that our foes from the south do have a legitimate argument.  There are many things that both of these teams have in common but I'll focus on what separates them.

+ 4 wins over teams currently ranked in the top 25 - OSU / Texas Tech / Cincinnati / TCU
+ Strong road win over OSU
+ Possibly the hottest team in the country at this time.  Even being accused of "running up the sore" while playing backups early in the fourth quarter
- Loss to Texas on a neutral field

+ 3 wins over teams currently ranked in the top 25 - OU / OSU / Missouri 
+ Strong win on neutral field over OU
- Loss to Texas Tech on last minute touchdown on the road.

Now that we know those things, who would I vote for?  Well, it depends.  It depends on whether I was asked to vote for the team I thought was the best team or which team deserves the higher ranking.  If I was to vote on which team "deserved" the higher ranking, I'd have to give Texas the nod.  They played on an even level and gave 90%-100% effort every time out.  Their loss came on the road in a close one.  And they had the head to head win over OU.  However, if I was to vote for the team that I thought was the better of the two, I would give the edge to OU.  I know, I know, Texas already beat them on a neutral field.  Consider this though.  On that day in early October, OU played arguably their worse, most sloppy game of the season while Texas played one of their most impressive games of their season.  If the two played 10 times I believe OU would win 7.

One more thing for OU fans to consider.  With the track record that the Sooners have built in BCS games, these next two games are must wins.  With all the controversy and whining going on, a loss in either the Big12 Championship or the BCS Championship would be devastating to the egos of OU fans everywhere.  When you get a break... you better not squander it.

Your thoughts?

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Christmas... Without all the Crap

My wife (Pepper) and I were with a group of friends recently when I said "I hate Christmas". Well, I know that's what I said but not actually quite what I meant. So, In the following paragraphs I'll try to clarify my feelings on this subject.

I'll first off mention that this conversation was taking place 1 week before the Thanksgiving holiday. Boy I LOVE Thanksgiving! Not just because of a four-day weekend, football, or event the excuse to overeat. Thanksgiving to me, is like Christmas... without all the crap. Think about it. Even the annual cartoons on television will focus on being thankful and surrounded with those you love. Even giving. We share a meal together (which is a special thing). Many cultures would consider the sharing of a meal as the most intimate and precious thing people can do together. It represents the sharing of that which sustains life.

Unfortunately, for many of us, in less than a week we shifted our focus from what am I thankful for to ... what do I want. I guess this is what I hate about what Christmas has become in our society. The world around us focuses on not being "shown up" by someone who buys a cooler or more expensive gift than them or focuses on a fat guy in a fur coat who can magically sneak into our homes at night and eat our food (kinda creepy when you think of it... huh).

I would like to pose a challenge. My challenge is to treat Christmas like Thanksgiving. Focus on what you've been given (a savior, unconditional love from a holy father, grace, etc) rather than what you will get or even what you will give. Whenever those around you are talking aobut Christmas spirit, mention the real spirit behind Christmas. Celebrate Christmas without all the crap.

I'm taking the challeng. Will you?


Tuesday, December 2, 2008

What do frogs write on?

Want to be the coolest parent on the block? I think every parent has wanted that at some time or another. Try these 3 easy steps...

  1. Check out this link ( ) or search the term "jokes for kids" on your favorite search engine.
  2. Make a short list of a few silly jokes that your kids will think are great and keep it handy.
  3. Break out a random joke from the list when your kid has friends over so they can all hear it and laugh together. Or, use it to put a smile on your own kids face by whispering it to them during one of those sad or grumpy times.

Next thing you know, you'll be the hit of the neighborhood, and your kid will be the one with the "coolest parents". Unless you live on my street. :)

By the way... Q: What do frogs write on?

A: Lilly pads.